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Polk County Motorcycle Accident Turns Deadly

Chris Russo May 17, 2011

Michael MItts, 38, of Lakeland, Florida was driving a motorcycle with a passenger when another vehicle backed out of a driveway.  Mitts applied the brakes and slid the motorcycle in an attempt to avoid the backing vehicle.  Both Mitts and his 30-year old passenger, Laura Nalley, died at the scene.  The accident happened on North Chestnut Lane and Ivey Road in Lakeland, Florida at approximately 7:24 p.m.  Raykesha Corbett of Lakeland, Florida, 20, was the driver of the other vehicle.

This accident is tragic but it has multiple levels of liability.  The passenger's estate has a right to sue both drivers for any negligence that they committed as this is likely to be a case of comparative negligence where both drivers are at fault to some degree.  It is sometimes difficult for a family to bring a claim against the family of someone that their loved one was close to, but that is the only option to achieve justice on behalf of the passenger.  Basically, the driver backing up should not have backed into the road if it was not clear and the driver of the motorcycle should have anticipated that the backing vehicle might enter the roadway and should have taken anticipatory precautionary actions.  The passenger is along for the ride and is utterly helpless.  With that being said, there is likely to be some degree of comparative fault and the estate of the motorcycle driver can and perhaps should bring a claim against the driver of the car.  Any damages awarded will be reduced by the percentage degree of comparative fault, but notwithstanding comparative fault, the damages are exceedingly high because it is a death case.  The families of the deceased will be required to have a probate set up in order to bring these respective claims.  A personal representative must be appointed under Florida law and bring the claims on behalf of all the survivors of that particular deceased.  If you or a loved one have questions concerning what to do, please contact a Lakeland car accident or wrongful death lawyer for information about a free consultation with the lawyer.  Home and hospital visits are available upon request.  The statute of limitations on a wrongful death claim is generally 2 years.

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